Weekend Portfolio: Lanny Xiuzhu Li
RED is a love story between two queer Chinese girls. Inspired by the traditional Chinese matchmaking myth that connects two (heterosexual) lovers with red string on their pinky fingers, this story is not just about intimacy and connection, but also about struggle and rebellion. Red string intervenes to bring the girls closer. Simultaneously, the confinement it causes signifies the obstacles the girls experience due to the “unconventional” nature of their relationship. The gesture of rewriting the myth through queering the tradition and involving more intimate body parts breaks the taboo of queer love and pushes the boundary of the gender and sexuality binary within an intimate relationship.
“Red is life, symbolizing the most primitive instinct of any living beings
Red is an identity, giving away the over-5000-year heritage engraved in our consciousness
Red is a commitment, creating the life-long bond between those in love
Red is a burden, representing a tradition that is too heavy to carry, too painful to forget
Red is a taboo, implying feelings and emotions that seem to be too different to fit in
Red is an intervention, filling the void that exists in between our space and our time
Red is a rebellion, breaking the shackles of gender and sexuality within an intimate relationship
Red is a statement, speaking with subtle gestures and louder than thousands of words
Red is in between our bedrooms under one roof
Red is us”
You can find more of Lanny’s work here.